A Qur'anic Manuscript In The Ḥijāzī Script From c. 700 CE

Islamic Awareness

© Islamic Awareness, All Rights Reserved.

First Composed: 19th October 2007

Last Updated: 27th October 2007

submit to reddit

Assalamu ʿalaykum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

Folio 2b

Folio 3a


Late 1st century hijra / c. 700 CE


41.0 cm x 28.6 cm.

Scripts and contents


Sūrah āl-‘Imrān, verses 34-184.

Important Features

Eight leaves (one fragmentary), 20-27 lines to the page written in brown ḥijazi script, diacritical marks, where present, consists of oval dots or angled dashes, no vowel points, clusters of brown ink dots to indicate verse divisions, circular devices consisting of green and red dots every ten verses, one long, narrow rectangular panel of green and red decoration with a circular marginal device consisting of coloured dots on final folio, probably to indicate the sūrah heading of Sūrah al-Nisa‘, leaves sewn together with original stitching, 5 leaves trimmed with some loss of text, final two folios with holes and some loss of text, creased, stained, water-damaged, some later re-inking.

It appears that the scribes must have copied the Qur'an on the single leaves which were then stitched together using stitching probably made from animal gut. If all the physical sections of the Qur'an were made up from eight leaves and contained more or less the same number of verses, they would have needed approximately thirty gatherings of eight single leaves. This physical division is close to the modern Qur'an sections (juz') and although the latter are certainly based on a division of the texts for purpose of recitation (one juz' for each day for the holy month of Ramaḍan) the need for phyical divisions of groups of leaves in the early Qur'ans may well have had an influence on this.


Not known.

Bookmark and Share


[1] Oriental Manuscripts And Miniatures, Friday 22nd October 1993 (Catalogue No. 93561), Sotheby's: London, pp. 26-29 (Lot 34).

The images above are reproduced from the stated sources under the provisions of the copyright law. This allows for the reproduction of portions of copyrighted material for non-commercial, educational purposes.

With the exception for those images which have passed into the public domain, the use of these images for commercial purposes is expressly prohibited without the consent of the copyright holder.

Back To The Qur'anic Manuscripts